The Look

Houston Style Setter: Nick Zamora

The Suffers' drummer on how to pack for a road trip and why drummers always wear denim.

By Jamie Smith March 7, 2016

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Nick Zamora

Nick Zamora has drumsticks in his pocket and everything he needs in a carry-on. The drummer for breakout band The Suffers, who just dropped their first full-length album, has been traveling all over the nation having made appearances on prestigious stages like The Late Show with David Letterman and The Daily Show, and hitting Jimmy Kimmel Live! next on March 12.

When he’s in town, Zamora lights up Houston with his broken-in, rocker street style and, today, has given us some amazing tips on how to live your life out of a suitcase.

What clothes pack the best when you are touring?

Denim and underwear. Everything else is a mess. We pack as light as possible and travel with an electric steamer. Some of the fancier green rooms have laundry so that helps keep things looking decent. 

Do you fold, roll, or just stuff your clothes into your suitcase?

I roll little things, fold pants, and hang shirts and jackets. We have our trailer set up to hang garment bags so it keeps the other bags small. 

What items are a MUST when you travel?  

I found this ridiculous thing online called the Ostrich Pillow Light. It is a cross between a pillow and an eye mask. I can pull it over my head in the van or on a plane, even if I'm not sleeping, and forget I'm rolling in such close quarters. Also, lip balm, custom molded earplugs, a fun camera (I brought an old Canon Super 8 cam this tour), and big backup phone batteries so I can video chat with Kendall and Aulay any time.

How do you stay looking well-rested when you're in a new hotel every night?

Ha! I don't know that I look well rested. Erin Conley at Therapy Hair Studio has figured out how to make my disheveled appearance look intentional. I just try to shave occasionally and shower regularly. 

What's in your pocket right now?

Trailer keys, a Fitbit, a bottle opener, a phone battery, and credentials for a show we're taping today but is super secret cause it doesn't air for a few days. 

How has your style changed since you went from a day job to full-time rock 'n' roll star?

Thankfully we're not full rockstar, so there are no pre-torn outfits or leather vests. When I'm working, I wear whatever is going to be easy to change out of before we go on stage. I'm not trying to impress anyone in the van or at the truck stop. For shows, we shifted from suits which are hard to maintain on the road (50/50 vodka and water in a spray bottle is a pro-tip we got from Kacey Musgrave's wardrobe manager, FYI) to Levi's black denim pants and jackets. 

When we're off I am way more casual than I was at my job before. When I shop for stuff now, I'm usually buying something that'll work on stage as well as real life. I have some nice shirts from Rye 51 and Bonobos that feel and look nice but won't get destroyed after a few nights of drumming in them. Denim is key though, and jackets and sweaters. I like layers despite the fact that I can't wear them most of the year in Houston.

What piece of fashion advice will you give to your son once he starts to dress himself? 

I can't wait for him to dress himself! He can do whatever he wants. His uncle Alex is notorious for his unique style so hopefully that influences him. If he struggles like I do, I'd probably say to keep things simple, find what works, and buy a bunch of it.

What's your favorite place in Houston to go on a date with your gorgeous wife? 

We take it pretty easy so we lean toward stuff like the bar at Coltivare, snacks at Provisions, or Teotihuacan. If we're feeling ambitious, we're more likely to get in the car and drive to Smitty's in Lockhart though. We try to make our time together count.

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